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#3528
   15 January 2015

Pope Francis Arrives in the Philippines (FIN-FIS)

Philippines: January 15-19, 2015 - The theme of the Pope's Visit is "Mercy and Compassion."

The top picture is the front page of a national newspaper. The pope occupies the whole page, just as he occupies almost the whole heart of the majority Catholic Filipinos. The middle picture is from Tuloy Foundation, the two kids, Mark and Lanie, who were chosen to welcome the pope with flowers at the airport. The next picture is a composite shots of Fr Joel who is scheduled to appear in several TV stations as a commentator  during these days.

The pictures here are taken from various sources in the Facebook and media institutions.



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Mission intention of January 2015: For all Salesians of Don Bosco
That as a Congregation which goes forth in a Church without borders may the Salesian Mission Day
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  Pope Francis Arrives in the Philippines (FIN-FIS)

PHILIPPINES: January 15-19, 2015 - The theme of the Pope's Visit is Mercy and Compassion. A very appropriate theme because the Philippines has had a series of natural disasters lately; and the example of the Pope and the message he brings are lessons for all, especially for the Filipinos themselves. Indeed, in the various dioceses and parish communities, there had already been much reflection, plans of action and also practical ways to be merciful and compassionate to those who are in need and suffering.

Some Philippine bishops also reiterated the Pope's desire that his visit be a way of imitating Christ who was compassionate and merciful, and that this visit be seen as an opportunity for spiritual renewal, rather than an eager tussle for a handshake or a "selfie" as if for a rock-star. Cardinal Tagle said that the Pope wants to be known as a regular person, and does not want the focus on himself but on Christ. (http://www.cbcpnews.com/papalvisit/?p=1537)

The organizers of this event said that there would be not much attention for officials and VIP's because the Pope wanted to meet the poor and victims of disasters. The pope would also travel to the periphery, the city of Tacloban (about 1 hour by airplane, south of Manila) which was hit by last year's typhoon.

Needless to say that the Pope's visit to Manila and Tacloban is making the Salesians of both FIN and FIS Provinces up on their toes. Today, at the welcome ceremony in the airport, there was a group of teens from the Tuloy sa Don Bosco Streetchildren Village, who with other kids, participated as dancers. Two of our children from Tuloy (Mark and Lanie) will welcome the pope, in the usual Filipino tradition. Then on Sunday, January 18, at the meeting of the pope with the youth leaders in the University of Sto Thomas, our representatives from the SYM will also be there. In the afternoon of the same day, members of the Salesian Family, our Parishes and Schools will go in groups to join in the Public Mass of the Pope at the Rizal Park in Luneta-Manila.

For January 17, near Tacloban, our FIS community in Borongan is also busy, along with Fr Eugene Maglasang who is the coordinator of the Don Bosco DIRECT that had assisted during the first days of the crisis, then in the following months they had rebuilt houses and schools in Tacloban through the help the Salesian Missions Office of Madrid and the Don Bosco Network.

One of members of the FIN Social Communication team, Fr Joel Camaya SDB, is scheduled to appear in 4 TV stations and a radio station to be interviewed and share his comments and insights with the viewers. While Fr Joel was in Rome for studies, he had already been interviewed during the conclave and other ceremonies of Pope Francis. Fr Joel is presently the dean of the Don Bosco College in Canlubang. Other Salesians too have appeared on TV like Fr Francis Gustillo, SDB.